Visual Rhetoric is a collaboration between the LSE and UAL (LCC) with a recently designed and launched public presence at www.visualrhetoric.ac.uk. This knowledge exchange project brings together designers and researchers from the social sciences, arts and humanities.
Post Graduate graphic designers from LCC collaborate with LSE researchers to develop powerful visual ways in which to explore and present their research. In addition to an open public space the project also required a area for discrete collaboration and communication where sensitive subject matter can be explored and approaches negotiated and developed.
Working closely with Project Leaders Penny Hilton (LCC) and Stavroula Tsirogianni (LSE) over a series of meetings and liaising closely with Sonja Grussendorf and Chris Fryer, Learning Technologists at the LSE, John Jackson and Mike Kelly established a discrete collaborative platform for the project on myblog.arts.
The design of the discrete space is in line with the public platform and by creating ways to add LSE participants (including sharing administration rights to this area with two LSE Learning Technologists) adding and assisting users was streamlined.
As Stavroula says, “the collaborative space set up by the UAL for the Visual Rhetoric enabled the communication between the two universities and cultures – social researchers and designers – which allowed them to familiarise themselves with the project, freely interact with each other, share and exchange ideas and clearly showcase the visual content that was being produced throughout the process … many thanks for all your support”.
Of the collaborative nature of the support, Stavroula notes that “CLTAD’s and LSE CLT’s involvement in the project was key in setting up the online collaborative space promptly and enhancing its functionality for both universities. The co-ordination between the two centres was excellent, which allowed us – as project leaders – to learn about the role of social web tools in creating opportunities for collaboration and communication that enhance the teaching and learning experience for both designers and social researchers. They were excellent in encouraging, assisting, advising us on our role as mediators on how to create a space that empowers our users to take ownership of their learning with and for others and shape their own community of practice. Their response to emerging issues was always immediate and effective. The collaborative space would not have been possible without their enthusiasm and commitment to the project.”